During these very days I struggle with my response to the demands of three young kids. I know. It is really, really difficult, and the days truly can be long. I know I am not perfect, I am but dust, but it seems the message I hear from the Lord is that I can do all things through Him who gives me strength. And I don't just want to survive these demanding days, I want to thrive towards my kids.
It comes down to mindset. I have noticed over the recent months that the times where I am more easily frustrated are when I have other things I am trying to accomplish. Whether it is fixing a meal or trying to leave the house on time, when I set my mind on the tasks then my kids seem to be more of an interruption. But that isn't the message I want to send. Don't get me wrong, responsibilities still linger and some things have to get done. But I want my mind to honor the Lord with regard to my precious gifts from Him; so there are a few phrases I am convicted to meditate upon:
- This little one is Yours, O Lord, not mine
- Help me shepherd these little lambs to Your green pasture
- My job as their mommy is to teach them Your ways and Your promises,
- Which includes appropriate discipline and unconditional love
- Convict me quickly of my thoughts, that I would honor You
The fact is that our kids will not be perfect. They are going to mess up...alot. That is why God put me in their lives--to teach and model a life submitted to the Lord. We need not take their poor choices personally, rather see those times as yet another opportunity to point them to the One who will give them a life of victory (I am preaching to myself). When my kids think back to their preschool years, my hope is that they will say, "I remember that my mommy loved Jesus." Oh, how many times I have failed. Thank you Lord that Your grace is bigger.